New booklet inspires churches to cater for hearing impaired

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A new booklet published by Christian Services for the Blind and Hearing Impaired (CSFBHI) aims to inspire churches to cater to those with hearing needs.

Researched and written by retired audiologist Graeme Weir, complimentary copies of How to Equip Your Church or Venue for People with Hearing Problems have been distributed to churches with this week’s Adventist Record, with a view to improving communication with the ever-increasing proportion of members using hearing aids.

“[The booklet] is aimed at churches and public venue administrators,” said Mr Weir. “I think it will serve as an excellent resource for audiologists and students to update them on the latest ALD systems.”

“Little has been done to improve accessibility in our churches since the now-outdated hearing loops were installed 30 years ago,” said Lee Dunstan, CSFBHI manager and publisher of the booklet. “The digital revolution has produced massive improvements to hearing aid systems, including broadcasts direct to implants such as the cochlear ear, and we need to embrace them if we are to effectively communicate the gospel.

“This booklet also provides an excellent summary of the latest assistive listening systems and the ethical and legal requirements that all public venues, churches included, need to be aware of.”

This Sabbath (April 27) is the General Conference’s Special Needs Emphasis Day, which includes the Blind and Deaf demographics. CSFBHI is a free service by the Seventh-day Adventist Church to its hard-of-hearing and blind communities, offering personal development sponsorships, an annual camp for the Deaf, and an audio book library for the Blind, which includes weekly audio Sabbath School lessons. Free personal copies are available on the CSFBHI website, but bulk orders will incur a charge.